Chuka Umunna trots out an utterly ‘disgraceful’ lie as massive numbers of kids live in poverty

Chuka Umunna
Support us and go ad-free

Chuka Umunna quite rightly got slated for making “disgraceful” comments BBC Politics Live on 18 November. Because as new figures showed child poverty and foodbank use have hit horrific highs, he seemed to argue that austerity was over.

“Beyond austerity” – wtaf?!

Liberal Democrat candidate Umunna claimed:

We’re beyond austerity now.

Thankfully, economist Grace Blakeley took Umunna down, saying:

We are so not beyond austerity. That is a disgraceful thing to say.

“Foodbank hell”

As Umunna made his controversial comments, exclusive research from the Mirror revealed the tragic reality of austerity. Because after nearly ten years of Conservative-led (and Lib-Dem-enabled) rule, “foodbank demand has rocketed by 3,772%”. In 2009/10, the largest “foodbank network had 57 outlets”, providing 40,898 aid packages, 13,959 of these to children. But by March 2019, the same network had 425 foodbanks. That’s a 646% increase. And in 2018, it gave away 1,583,668 food parcels – about 577,618 of these to children.

And that’s not all.

In 2018, “child poverty in working families rose” 38%. So 2.9 million children from such families now live in poverty. That’s 800,000 more children since 2010. This is in homes where at least one parent works. According to the Trades Union Congress, this affects “one in four children”. Universal Credit is largely to blame for these shocking statistics.

In response, Jeremy Corbyn told the Mirror:

These shocking figures should shame the Conservatives. Their policies have pushed people into destitution. It is a national scandal that so many families can’t afford food.


With the above statistics in mind, many people unsurprisingly tore into Umunna:

Meanwhile, there are many other “horrific consequences of austerity”:

Perfect storm

Universal Credit, alongside a lack of social housing, soaring private rents, zero-hours jobs, and over nine years of Conservative-led austerity created a perfect storm that’s destroyed lives. And let’s not forget, Umunna’s latest party enabled that.

So if anyone needed any reason not to vote Lib Dem in this election, just listen to Umunna’s utterly “disgraceful” lie.

Featured image via screengrab/YouTube

Support us and go ad-free

Get involved

We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support

The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.

The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.

So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.

Support us